Friday, 14 December 2012 15:39
The Queensland government has promised landholders a new process to resolve disputes with coal seam gas and other miners.
The government says landholders will soon be able to take land access and other disputes through a new resolution process, to be integrated into the Land Court.
The process will be independent of government and is part of a six-point plan aimed at taking the heat out of conflict between the agricultural and mining sectors.
Changes to the framework also include a review of compensation for landholders.
Natural Resources and Mines Minister Andrew Cripps said the plan addressed the recommendations of a review of the framework used to manage land access and compensation agreements.
Mr Cripps said the original Land Access Framework, developed by the former Labor government, had failed to properly serve both groups.
The government's plan would provide equity and certainty to both sectors, he said.
Under the changes, the Land Court's jurisdiction will be expanded to include the conduct of relevant parties, and the court will offer a new dispute resolution process, independent of the government.
Any conduct and compensation agreement will also be noted on the land titles, and landholders will be able to opt out of formal land access agreements.
Standard conduct and compensation agreements will be developed for the mineral, coal and coal seam gas industries.
And there'll be a single point landholders and resource companies can go to for information.
Mr Cripps said the government had already addressed one key recommendation by establishing the independent GasFields Commission.
He said an implementation committee - involving the GasFields Commission, AgForce, Queensland Farmers Federation, Queensland Resources Council, Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association and the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies - would oversee the plan's implementation.
"This group will be convened to foster a culture of open and honest engagement between resource companies and landholders," he said.
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